2014 Arizona Golf Hall of Fame
Check out the photo gallery!
(Tom Cunningham Presented by Jim, Jeff, Mike and Scott Cunningham)
Tom Cunningham has had nearly 30 years of involvement with golf in Arizona…began as a member of the Phoenix Thunderbirds…has served on the Phoenix Citizens Golf Advisory Council, the USGA Junior Amateur Championship Committee, and the USGA Regional Associations Committee. Since its creation in 1986, Tom has been involved with the Junior Golf Association of Arizona (JGAA)…served two years as president…in 1994 became the Executive Director…served in that role until his retirement in December 2013…instrumental in increasing the JGAA’s membership base, fundraising and introducing and supporting programs such as the Junior America’s Cup, LPGA/USGA Girls Golf program , JGAA Boys Club introductory program…he continues to serve as Executive Director of the Junior America’s Cup. Tom was named the AGA’s inaugural Champion of Golf in 2008, an award given to those that selflessly champion the game of golf in Arizona.
(Steve Dallas Presented by Jason Dallas, Kelli Bachmann (daughter), Charlie Beljan)
Steve Dallas, a Seattle native, played professional golf for three years before moving to Arizona in 1984 where he got his amateur status back…had a successful amateur career in Arizona…won the 1988 AZ Mid-Amateur Championship, 1999 and 2002 AZ Publinks Championship, 2002 and 2004 AZ Four-ball Championship…member of the Goldwater Cup team for 18 plus years…qualified for nine USGA championships…named Masters and Senior Player of the Year a combined four times. Steve has served the Game through supporting tournaments, charities and as a long-time president and board member of the Alta Mesa Country Club…has been a golf course owner and manager of such courses as Western Skies, Apache Creek and Las Colinas. He has very generously donated his time to help players of all skill levels and has been a mentor to such individuals as Hall of Famer Fred Couples and current PGA Tour player Charlie Beljan.
(Phil Green Presented by Orrin Vincent)
Phil Green, a life-long Arizona resident born in Safford, played collegiate golf at Mesa Community College and Grand Canyon University…began his professional career at Orange Tree Golf Resort in 1979…became a member of the PGA of America in 1985. In 1995, Phil joined OB Sports, a very successful golf course management firm and is currently its Chief Operating Officer…oversees all corporate affairs and supervises the operations for all courses managed by the company…has personally overseen the management implementation of more than 75 golf facilities in 22 states. Phil has dedicated over three decades to the Southwest Section PGA…served in a leadership position as Vice-President and as President…was named their Professional of the Year in 1994…was inducted into their Hall of Fame in 2013.
(Paul Skelton- Presented by Bill Kamm)
Paul K. Skelton is recognized as one of the leading professionals in the golf and country club management field, having earned a reputation for the quality of clubs managed, teams assembled and performance on behalf of developers and club members alike. Paul moved to Arizona in 1973 to attend the University of Arizona and has called Arizona home ever since…currently employed as the General Manager at The Country Club at DC Ranch in Scottsdale. Paul has served the Club Managers Association of America…he was president of the Greater Southwest Chapter in 1988 and 1989…elected National Director of CMAA in 1992…served as its president in 1999 and 2000…served as Editor of the Director’s Digest, Master Club Advisors from 2005 to 2007. Paul feels his greatest service is through the mentorship of many individuals who now have successful careers in the golf and club management industry.
Do you have hip issues? Talk to Dr. Economopoulos…
TOCA (The Orthopedic Clinic Association) has been a leader in orthopedic care since 1949, led by nationally recognized, established orthopedic physicians like Dr. Economopoulos. He is a native of Arizona where he attended Brophy College Prep. He received his undergrad degree and medical degree at the University of Arizona in Tucson. He completed residencies in both general surgery and orthopedic surgery at Banner Good Samaritan Medical Center. He then spent a year as a sports medicine fellow at the University of Virginia specializing in shoulder and knee arthroscopy. He completed his training with a 6 month hip arthroscopy fellowship in Melbourne, Australia with John O’Donnell, a pioneer in hip arthroscopy and one of the highest volume hip arthroscopists in the world. Dr. Economopoulos is one of few orthopaedic surgeons in the United States to complete a concentrated fellowship in hip arthroscopy and the treatment of femoroacetabular impingement (FAI). His specialties are on hip and knees, which directly affects golfers.
What made you go into this nitch?“I have always wanted to become a doctor and I followed the path of sports medicine because of my passion for sports. So, it fit well to go into orthopedics. I have been with TOCA for 15 months. Few people do this procedure so that’s when I decided this would be where I would dedicate my studies. I found my nitch in hips. I still operate on other parts but 1/3 of my work is in hips and 2/3 is in rotator cups, knees etc.”
Do you see a lot of young athletes?“Yes, the shape of their hip changes and a bump forms on the hip. This is caused by wear and tear from sports. When these kids start playing sports at a young age the hip slowly starts to reshape. Hip pain usually comes about around ages 18-21. I will go in and reshape the hip and get them corrected.”
You said kids start developing this hip bump when they are younger from sports. Is there a way to prevent it?“Developmental issues are almost inevitable (soft plate moving up and remaining). The best thing you can do is watch it and treat it as it goes. Also, just because you have the bump does not mean you are going to have symptoms. When patients see the bump the next step is physical therapy. You can strengthen the hip to hopefully avoid surgery but you cannot prevent the bump.”
Do you see a lot of wear and tear issues from older members?“I see younger patients in their 40s and 50s now needing hip replacements. The bump bangs up cartilage and we are seeing younger people needing hip replacements earlier. Golfers engage their hips on their swing.
Do you see young/old patients from golf with hip issues?“Golfers develop hip issues on their twist, when they are rotating it pinches the nerve the hip. This can be treated with scoping.”
Do you have a message for golfers?“If you are having hip pain, get it checked out earlier rather than later. Then hopefully that will allow for us to help prevent hip replacement.”
Check out Bunker to Bunkers segment with Dr. Economopoulos on Saturday 15th on radio station 98.7 at 7-9am.